Customs Union or Free Trade Area? The Role of Political Asymmetries

Posted: 18 Aug 1998

See all articles by Subhayu Bandyopadhyay

Subhayu Bandyopadhyay

Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis - Research Division; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; West Virginia University

Howard J. Wall

Lindenwood University - Center for Economics and the Environment

Abstract

When trade policy is endogenously determined by lobbying, it matters whether countries are arranged into a customs union or a free trade area. This paper compares the two regimes when the member governments are asymmetric in their susceptibilities to lobbying and in their bargaining power within a customs union. In our model, a customs union never leads to lower tariffs for both countries, whereas it can lead to higher tariffs for both.

JEL Classification: F13, F15

Suggested Citation

Bandyopadhyay, Subhayu and Wall, Howard J., Customs Union or Free Trade Area? The Role of Political Asymmetries. Review of International Economics. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=114348

Subhayu Bandyopadhyay

Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis - Research Division ( email )

411 Locust St
PO Box 442
St. Louis, MO 63011
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

West Virginia University ( email )

Morgantown, WV 26506-6025
United States
304-293-7879 (Phone)
304-293-7061 (Fax)

Howard J. Wall (Contact Author)

Lindenwood University - Center for Economics and the Environment ( email )

209 S. Kingshighway
St. Charles, MO 63301
United States

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